Friday, May 11, 2012

I apologize for this being behind but I was supposed to stay quiet after the transfer for a couple days and then we had to pack to come home. 

Monday May 7, 2012
     Monday we had our embryo transfer in the morning.  We were taken back to the same procedure area and set up in our own curtained room.  You are allowed to eat before the transfer and are required to drink 3-5 glasses of water.  I drank half of a gigantic bottle figuring that would do.  The nurses asked me if I had a full bladder and told me that since it would be another forty minutes I could try and go a little to make it less uncomfortable as long as I didn't completely empty it.  Well, I was feeling fine until I "went a little" which made me cross my legs and dance more.   

  The doctor finally came in to let us know  about our embryos and put us at ease.  He informed us that eight of the embryos survived the weekend and that he recommended transferring two 5AA  blastocysts, which are top quality.  There is a grading system and I found a good website from an IVF clinic in Chicago that explains and shows good pictures.   Here is some of the information that I found. 

Blastocyst development and stage status
Blastocoel cavity less than half the volume of the embryo
Blastocoel cavity more than half the volume of the embryo
Full blastocyst, cavity completely filling the embryo
Expanded blastocyst, cavity larger than the embryo, with thinning of the shell
Hatching out of the shell
Hatched out of the shell

ICM grade
Inner cell mass quality
Many cells, tightly packed
Several cells, loosely grouped
Very few cells

TE grade
Trophectoderm quality
Many cells, forming a cohesive layer
Few cells, forming a loose epithelium
Very few large cells

   Here is a photo from the website of what a blastocyst of the same quality looks like. 

Hatching blastocyst coming out of shell 

5AA Blastocyst hatching out of shell = 5
Inner cell mass = A
Trophectoderm = A

    The doctor also mentioned that the rest of the embryos were still of good quality and that if we chose to freeze them the embryologist would do it in groups of three.  We of course agreed but hope that we won't need them unless we would like to eventually have another baby.  At that point the process if shortened tremendously because I would not need to be on weeks of injections.  

  OK, back to the transfer.  After the doctor left, the nurses had me change into the too short for a 5'11" woman hospital gown and we walked down to the same room that the egg retrieval was done in.  When I got in there the ultrasound was set up and three different nurses came in and kindly pressed on my extremely full bladder.  Next the doctor comes in and explains that this is similar to a yearly pap smear.  He starts his part and the nurse positions the ultrasound, pressing firmly, then you wait for the embryologist to bring in the embryos.  It was the longest two minutes of my life.  When the embryos or more correctly blastocysts are brought in it only takes a minute to do the transfer.  He watched the ultrasound and announced that he found a perfect spot in my uterus away from my polyp.  

  After the transfer I had to lay on my back for one hour so they took me back to my room where John was waiting.   That was fun considering I just had my bladder pressed on multiple times after consuming a liter of water.   They recommended to stay quiet and not talk a lot.  
  John had a few questions about our other blastocysts so the embryologist came in to talk to us.  He said the ones that we were going to freeze were still of good quality and should we need them they could continue to improve after the thawing.  He also said that from his perspective we have a 30% chance of multiples..oh boy!  

  The rest of the day I laid around and John waited on me.  I milked that as much as I could.  Well, actually I am still milking it.  Just a little!  We have to wait a couple weeks before we know anything and I haven't really decided if I will blog about the results either way for a while.  You have to be on progesterone starting from the egg retrieval and I was told until at least the first ultrasound, if there is a positive pregnancy test.  Dr. Arici wants to know the results of the blood test as well as the first ultrasound.    I was told at that point if I am pregnant he will let us know how much longer to be on the progesterone.  It is nice to know that he will still be working with my OB/GYN and supporting us even from afar. 

If you are thinking of going abroad for IVF and are interested in knowing more about our trip or have questions please leave a comment below or email us at  You can also get more information at www.IVFvacationcenter,com.

  Thank you for following our journey...

Kelly and John


  1. Hi Kelly and John,

    My husband James and I recently started to consider Turkey in our battle with infertility. your blog answered alot of our questions and concerns. I did have a few questions .

    What was the total length of stay?

    How soon are you able to fly home?

    Does the Hospital provide you with a cell phone or do you buy a pre paid one when you get there?

    Did you have any concerns about safety while you were there?

    Is the medicine quality good ?

    What would you have brought on your trip to make things easier, more fun or just wished that you would have had?

    Thanks for any assistance that you can give us. Good luck and baby dust to you!!

    Kimberly Moore

  2. Hi Kimberly,
    I would love to answer your questions. That is why I did the blog to help others that are considering IVF and have concerns about leaving the country.

    1. We were there for 20 nights which is what the IVF package includes. We needed every bit of that and so did the other couples. Every case is different though and they can't tell you ahead of time what is going to happen. I have no known issues but my eggs were a little slow growing so they had to bump my meds up a little for a couple more days than expected this put our retrieval and transfer a couple days later than expected.

    2. You can fly home 1-2 days after the transfer.

    3. No the hospital doesn't provide you with a phone. My husband's work had an international plan put on his cell phone and it definitely came in handy. My Aunt was in France at the same time and she just called Verizon and they sent her a temporary phone to use while there and charged by the minute or you can have your cell company activate yours for a short period of time. I don't know about buying a pre-paid phone while over there.

    4. I never felt unsafe once while I was there. We got looks of curiosity but we rode the trains, ferries, took cabs, walked, etc and never felt threatened. Although religion is obviously important as you can see when you are there Turkey is technically a secular country and a peaceful one at that.

    5. Yes, the meds are excellent quality. Some of them even have the same names as what we have here, like the progesterone gel. You will see big name pharmaceutical companies just like here on the boxes. The names are a little different but the types of meds are the same. I will give you the names and feel free to look them up. Puregon is the first med, after a couple days you then start Orgulatron which prevents the eggs from shattering. Ovitrelle releases the eggs for collection. It is the same as Ovidrel which we use here in the States. After the retrieval you will get a corticosteroid, aspirin, and also an antibiotic called Rulide, which is a drug manufactured in Australia. I like to know this stuff too so I looked it up! There was another one that I can't take, I think it is an anti-inflammatory, I forget the name.

    6. We would have liked a deck of cards but did find some at the store. They were expensive though and a little different. There are a few games in the sitting areas of the hotel. Maybe some movies downloaded onto our laptop, although my husband figured out how to get TV and movies while we were there so it worked out. Oh, speaking of that, our laptop and a camera to Skype family. Absolutely essential in our minds. Other than that we really just enjoyed each others company and the peace and quiet. We were out and about so much but towards the end we stuck around a little more and took walks a lot. Hope all this helps and if you have any more questions you can email me at

    Sorry if I talked too much!

    Good luck and thank you for the well wishes,



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